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Banks not pleased with Biden’s Comptroller of the Currency Nominee

The ABA has expressed “serious concerns” about Saule Omarova’s restructuring ideas

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  • Written by  Banking Exchange staff
Banks not pleased with Biden’s Comptroller of the Currency Nominee

Saule Omarova has been nominated by President Biden to serve in the role of comptroller of the currency, in a move that could see a substantial overhaul of the banking system in the US.

According to a statement released by the American Bankers Association on Friday, Omarova, who previously served in the US Treasury Department, has a history of advocating for policies that oppose how the US banking system is run today.

The ABA has cited that, for example, Omarova proposed that community banks “pass through” their deposits to the Federal Reserve, undermining the role of the community bank in the regions they serve.

She also voted to abolish the FDIC as deposit insurer and supervisor of state chartered institutions, signalling an end to the dual banking system.

“While we recognize the historic nature of Dr Omarova’s nomination to serve as comptroller of the currency and her impressive personal journey, we believe it is incumbent on Senators to rigorously examine her views on substantive banking policy issues as they would with any nominee to a position of this importance,” said Rob Nichols, president and CEO of the American Bankers Association.

“We have serious concerns about her ideas for fundamentally restructuring the nation’s banking system which remains the most diverse and competitive in the world. Her proposals to effectively nationalize America’s community banks, end regulatory tailoring based on risk and eliminate the dual banking system are particularly troubling,” he added.

Yesterday afternoon, US Senator and Banking Committee Ranking Member, Pat Toomey, also expressed reservations about the nominee.

He claimed that in the past, Omarova has made calls to radically reshape “the basic architecture and dynamics of modern finance.”

Toomey’s concerns address Omarova’s efforts to nationalize retail banking and have the federal reserve allocate credit.

The Senator said that she has previously moved to “effectively end banking as we know it”.

Omarova is currently a professor at Cornell Law School. She would be the first woman and person of color to lead the OCC as a full-time comptroller.

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